________________ CM . . . . Volume IV Number 16 . . . . April 10, 1998

Cover The Buried City of Pompeii.

Shelley Tanaka. Illustrated by Greg Ruhl.
Toronto, ON: Hyperion/Madison Press, 1997.
48 pp., hardcover, $16.95.
ISBN 0-7868-0285-5.

Subject Headings:
Excavations (Archaeology)-Italy-Pompeii (Extinct city)-Juvenile literature.
Italy-Antiquities-Juvenile literature.
Vesuvius (Italy)-Eruption, 79-Juvenile literature.

Grades 4 and up / Ages 9 and up.
Review by Valerie Nielsen.

**** /4

image The Buried City of Pompeii, Shelley Tanaka's third book in the successful "I Was There" series, brings a fascinating segment of ancient history to life for young readers. In it, the author recreates the lost world of Pompeii through a fictionalized account of Eros, steward in the House of Menander, whose skeleton was discovered in a small cellar room by archaeologists seventy years ago. Based on archaeological detective work, the story follows the daily activities of Eros during the morning and afternoon of August 24, 79 A.D. Beautifully detailed full page paintings by Greg Ruhl give the reader a feeling of what it must have been like to walk the streets, visit the forum and the baths in the doomed city and then to experience the terrible onslaught of pumice and ash on the afternoon of that fateful day. In the epilogue, the author returns to the present, explaining by way of diagrams, drawings and photographs just what happened the day Vesuvius exploded, and how our ongoing study of Pompeii is helping us to learn more about life in Roman times. Particularly poignant are the photographs of plaster casts of the victims of Vesuvius, showing us the people of Pompeii at the moment of death. Tanaka has included an excellent glossary with many Latin words which should prove a great help for young readers. Natural disasters being as popular a topic as they are, The Buried City of Pompeii will be a valuable addition to school library resources on this topic. Its wealth of dramatic visual detail and clear, uncluttered prose will ensure that the book will be enjoyed by intermediate students.

Highly recommended.

Valerie Nielsen is teacher-librarian at Bairdmore School in Winnipeg, Manitoba.

To comment on this title or this review, send mail to cm@umanitoba.ca.

Copyright © 1998 the Manitoba Library Association. Reproduction for personal use is permitted only if this copyright notice is maintained. Any other reproduction is prohibited without permission.

Published by
The Manitoba Library Association
ISSN 1201-9364